(No recipes for Madelines today-- just a reflection.)
It's that time of year, when the skies seem perpetually grey, and dust and ashes seem to collect in my thought patterns.Yet, out of these dark recesses, I want to remember the good - to process though the past year by making a list of the things worth remembering. The things that made this year worth it all - chaotic and difficult as it's been. So, in chronological order:
- The Lord Jesus Christ's healing power. I entered 2012 in the midst of the most severe depression I've experienced. While I know my experience isn't unique - many people have gone through that valley - my healing process was. That December, I visited some dear friends who listened, and reflected, and were praying for me. It should have been no surprise one Sunday night in late January, that my pastor felt led to hold a Mark 16 prayer line. I went through, and the Holy Ghost power hit me. At that point, I knew I was healed. But sometimes the complete manifestation comes a bit later. Slowly, throughout February, March and April, strength returned. My moods seemed to lift with the lengthening days, and slowly, God manifested the promise found in that prayer line.
- A do-over. I needed one badly last year, so the fact that I was teaching a semester classes, where I could begin again in January, was yet again another blessing.
- My nephews. Circumstances changed last year, and I'm with my brother's children more now than ever. I've found it to be one of the best, most difficult, but most fun challenges I've ever encountered. They are precious, smart, funny guys, and I love the fact that they're in my life more.
- EUROPE! I'd always wanted to go to Europe, especially with one of my sisters. The Lord laid this opportunity in both of our laps, and we ended up traveling for twenty-one days with a group of students. While it was difficult (and I'm not sure I'll do this again), it really was the opportunity of a lifetime.
- My dog, Ella, has been a new adventure for me - going through the stages of puppy hood has been-- Ahem--interesting to say the least. But she's a love, and she came into my life just when I needed her.
- Patience. Endurance. Finding grace in the waiting, and growth through difficulties.